Monitor, Merrimac, Memorial
9 March 2005, 2:14 PM
As Your Humble Blogger was making his way through the Monitor-Merrimac Memorial Bridge-Tunnel (I-664) this morning before dawn, the thought did not occur to me at all that March 9 is, after all, the anniversary of the Battle of Hampton Roads, known to Yankees as the Battle of the Monitor and Merrimac. In these parts, of course, the ironclad made from the hulk of the frigate Merrimac is known as the CSS Virginia.
The battle is fascinating; it’s the Agincourt of the sea. Well, it is fascinating. The Navy has Selected Original Documents, which make fine reading, but miss the forest for the trees. Having now kicked around this edge of the South a tiny bit, it’s become clear how hopeless secession was, particularly if the navy-less secessionists had no way of protecting the immense coasts and ports, particularly as they needed to maintain trade with Europe. Anyway, a bit of history on a day I would otherwise have only thought of as Vita Sackville-West’s birthday (oh, and Benito Santiago).